Build relationships for informed choices

P16 Richard Sexton

Developers working to refresh housing stock must take account of challenging planning restrictions when aiming to increase the annual number of new units.

At the same time, the industry is required by government to move rapidly towards green construction that is carbon neutral.

This latter requirement can add tens of thousands of pounds to construction and there is no proof yet that consumers are prepared to pay such a premium.
On the positive side, such challenges are demonstrably fostering innovation.

The industry has developed alternative forms of construction, including modular units built off-site for assembly on-site. Another notable example is Hempcrete, a concrete substitute that contains elements of the cannabis plant.

Initially lenders may be hesitant to lend against some of these construction forms which, once built, are difficult to differentiate from standard construction.

Valuers therefore have a growing role to assist lenders and the public in identifying construction elements and styles.

This will only start to bear fruit in future years. But valuers and developers should work closely together today to ensure lending and purchase decisions tomorrow are not encumbered by lack of available information.

Shared information helps facilitate business and ensures customers make informed choices.